Chemotherapy alters subjective senses of taste and smell but not dietary patterns in Japanese lung cancer patients.


Sagami Women's University, Kanagawa, Japan. [Email]


OBJECTIVE : To investigate how outpatient-based chemotherapy would alter the senses of taste and smell and affect daily dietary intake in patients with lung cancer.
METHODS : The self-reported taste and smell alteration (TSA) in 35 Japanese patients with lung cancer as well as their patterns of dietary intake at home were tested using a questionnaire.
RESULTS : The patients experienced considerable TSA, and smoking was shown to contribute to this alteration. Specifically, current or past smokers were more likely to experience subjective taste change during chemotherapy than never smokers were. Chemotherapy made steamed rice or sushi the most unfavorable food in the patients; on the other hand, Japanese-style noodles were the most preferred during chemotherapy. Nevertheless, the patients maintained their habit of consuming steamed rice at home at least once a day, suggesting the robustness of dietary habits despite the TSA caused by chemotherapy.
CONCLUSIONS : Nutritional assessment as well as appropriate advice and intervention by dietitians is expected to improve the general conditions and quality of daily living in patients with cancer.


Cancer,Chemotherapy,Dietary intake,Smell,Taste,

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